Travel, food, jobs, a huge international student community – what’s not to love about Australia? Whether your plane tickets are booked and your suitcases are packed, or you’re still in the process of picking the perfect Australian education provider for your overseas study experience, here are 10 things that will get you excited about living and studying Down Under!
A traveller’s dream
Travelling inside Australia is incredibly easy, with plenty of diverse destinations to choose from. You can hike in the mountains, go skiing, lounge by the beach or visit quaint country towns, and access is easy thanks to the country’s fantastic network of buses, trains and planes.
If you want to travel internationally, from Australia it’s incredibly easy to visit Asia, New Zealand, the Pacific Islands and even Hawaii! You’ll find direct flights to all of these destinations, as well as great deals year-round to save you some money.
Food, glorious food
Australia is famous for its food and drink culture, meaning you’ll discover plenty of awesome cafes, restaurants, pubs and bars. And with the country being a multicultural hub, delicious cuisines from all over the world are easily found in every city. If you’re missing home, you will almost certainly be able to find a restaurant that makes your local dishes.
You’ll also have the chance to try some homegrown foods. When trying Australian dishes, seek out tasty native ingredients, like lemon myrtle or finger limes, or go with the classics, like a meat pie, a lamington with fresh jam, or a pavlova covered in fruit.
Everything you’ve seen on TV and in movies is fairly true when it comes to Australian wildlife: kangaroos bouncing across the desert at sunset, koalas in gumtrees, platypuses in billabongs, Australian possums, smiling quokkas and fuzzy wombats… Across Australia there are lots of opportunities to get photos of the unique wildlife (and maybe even pat them!) to make your friends back home very jealous.
Instagrammable landscapes and landmarks
There are some incredible places you probably already associate with Australia: the sweeping views at Sydney Harbour with the Opera House and Harbour Bridge, Uluru in the desert, the Great Barrier Reef, the giant Melbourne Cricket Ground… Make sure you bring a good camera with you when you move to your new Aussie home so you can make the most of those Instagram opportunities.
Weather for everyone
When it comes to climate, Australia offers a little bit of everything. If you want hot, tropical weather, then moving north is perfect. You can study in balmy cities like Brisbane, Darwin or the Gold Coast. Or, if you prefer a Mediterranean climate with sunny summers and mild winters, then head to the southern capital cities, like Melbourne, Sydney and Adelaide. If you love the cold, choose Canberra or Tasmania for your studies.
Sports, sports, sports!
Watching and playing sports is integral to Australian culture. Most people will have a favourite sport, be it cricket, Australian Rules Football (AFL), soccer, rugby or tennis, just to name a few. And, if you don’t want to participate in playing, you can enjoy all of these sports and more at live matches year-round.
Studying in Australia means you have the opportunity to take up some part-time work, which you often can’t do as an international student in other countries. This means you will have more money to spend on enjoying your time in Australia, an opportunity to practise your English if it is not your first language, meet new people, and get practical work experience to help you find a job after you graduate.
History, culture and arts
Australia has a very interesting and rich history and culture to explore. Museums, libraries and galleries are often free or offer discounts for students, so you can start to learn more about your adopted home.
The arts are also incredibly popular in Australia, with four UNESCO Creative Cities located around the country for Literature (Melbourne), Film (Sydney), Music (Adelaide) and Design (Geelong). This UNESCO initiative celebrates cities that actively support, practise and promote particular creative industries.
Learning (yes, really!)
Whichever educational pathway you decide to undertake in your time abroad, you will be getting a first-class education in Australia. Higher education in Australia is internationally commended: Australian universities are rated some of the best in the world, while vocational education and training at TAFE will leave you with incredible job prospects upon graduation. There are also numerous private institutions, pathway colleges, Vocational Education and Training (VET) providers and English schools to choose from.
Meeting new people
With so many international students in Australia (around 876,000 were enrolled last year, to be precise), you will be meeting new people from all across the world, as well as plenty of Australians. Your education provider will no doubt host welcome events for students throughout the year, and if you join an association or club, you will be able to connect with like-minded individuals.